A journey from China to Europe riding a very special bike
A long way home
Last Saturday Mr. Jörg Gebers chose the Parrot Tree to kick off his “Long Way Home”, a journey that will bring him back to Europe from China riding a very special bike.
A project that has started becoming real before the COVID-19 Crisis burst, when he began to keep track of the development using his personal social media and a website: www.longwayhometo.eu
Now that his journey has started, this digital journal will for sure become even more interesting to follow, but the basic idea behind the project is crossing the Eurasian continent in order to connect people and promote sustainable travelling.
Jörg has been living in China for 5 years: Shanghai had become his new home. But during these 5 years, he started having a recurring dream: a treehouse. It was a flash from his memory: the treehouse from his backyard, all the way back to his place, in Germany. A peaceful spot where he could take a nap, read, or just do nothing.
Five years in Shanghai were enough for him: it was time to go back home and sit in his treehouse again.
Jörg’s home-town in Germany is Stuttgart. A flight from Pudong Airport would take a little more than 10 hours, but this is not the case. He wants to cross the continent in a definitely slower way: riding.
His “way home” is going to be definitely “long”! The route is 12,000km, the starting day was Aug 23rd and the estimated landing will be around Oct 31st. The main passages of his trip after Shanghai will be Xi’an - Urumqi – Almaty (Kazakhstan) – Saratov (Russia) - Kiev (Ukraine) – Krakow (Poland) and finally Stuttgart.
The journey will follow the new silk road. It will be a fun adventure, connecting with different people in Asia and Europe, experiencing new provinces, deserts, steppe, and their food and way of living.
But this is not all. What really makes his challenge unique is that he is not going to ride a common bike, but his Velobike, instead.
Inspired by TheSunTrip.com, a bicycle race event with several solar-driven bikes from Lyon (France) to Guangzhou (China) in 2018, Jörg decided to take the challenge to go home using this special ride.
No motor - pure human power, Velobike is a real SUV - Sports Utility Vehicle!
Jörg’s velobike is developed in the Netherlands and produced in Romania: it can reach a speed of up to 44km/h.
To keep up with his schedule, the plan is to ride 200km a day, 6 days a week. It is doable, but definitely a tough challenge.
Connecting the World was a remarkable achievement for humanity: flights make it possible to travel to opposite points of the globe within a day. But airplanes' environmental impact is huge, and passing trough aseptic airports makes your takeoff and your landing spot look the same.
Is an immediate transfer always that necessary? Is it possible to downsize the experience of travelling to a human scale and into a more Carbon-neutral way? Jorge definitely thinks so: travelling by Velobike is a way to do that!
Chestnuts, Memories & Practical Life
While society stigmatizes manual work, during childhood it is instead crucial to create vivid memories and to teach long lasting practical lessons we will need in our daily life thanks to the educational value of physical activities. Like picking chestnuts from the ground.
Cities and their Evolutionary Purpose as Learning Space
Change makers are called to look deeply into fast urbanizing regions to assess whether cities in their contemporary setup do promote human and planetary wellbeing. recommendation for a Citymaker 2.0 program
Keeping Each Other Company, Healing Childhood
This environment somehow halfway between home and school helped us to better understand the way children think. Now we tend to give them more trust, and we feel that we are better at assisting them in a way that goes in the direction to fulfill their potential.